Those with limited mobility or on low incomes are especially vulnerable to the dietary impact of these so-called food deserts'. But, as the Policy Commission on the Future of Farming and Food said: "It is critical for their future well-being that they and their children have a nutritious diet." Solving this problem would not only benefit consumers. It could provide a welcome opportunity for English growers too. Fruit and vegetables are a major component of a healthy diet, yet the share of the domestic market supplied by English producers has fallen sharply over the past 30 years. So if the problems of access could be solved and awareness of the need to eat five a day' reinforced, both consumers and growers could reap the rewards. One way of tackling food deserts ­ as recommended by the commission ­ could be the establishment of local food-buying cooperatives. Through them, demand can be driven by local communities, so that those who know the community ensure that consumers get what they want and need for their own well-being. The whole food chain has a critical role in improving nutrition. But the big four supermarkets ­ who have the lion's share of the grocery market ­ have a particular role to play in helping local co-operatives to get off the ground. For instance, supermarkets could supply them at low cost, or give them other technical/administrative advice and support. Without this contribution, it will be immensely difficult to solve the problem of food deserts. Increasing the demand and availability of fresh fruit and vegetables and other healthy food in areas that are currently ill-served, should bring gains all round. {{NEWS }}